President Dr Arif Alvi on Tuesday said that Special Economic Zones (SEZs) being developed across the country under the second phase of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would further augment Pakistan’s industrial growth and uplift transport, infrastructure, and energy sectors.

The president, addressing the 3rd Roundtable Conference on “Pakistan Paradise for Investment & CPEC-2030: Economic Revolution from Kashgar to Gwadar and Beyond”, held at Aiwan-e-Sadr, said that five SEZs, being developed under the CPEC, would possess state-of-the-art infrastructure.

He said the Government of Pakistan would provide all the necessary facilitation in setting up the industry in the SEZs.

He urged the local and foreign investors to fully benefit from the improved Ease of Doing Business in the country and utilize the opportunities being offered by the country’s business and investment-friendly policies.

Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Nong Rong and Editor-in-Chief of the Pakistan Observer Faisal Zahid Malik also addressed the conference which was attended by the members of the diplomatic community, media and businessmen.

The president highlighted that the investment-friendly policies of the country had already started paying dividends, encouraging famous mobile phone brands to invest in the manufacturing and assembling of phones in Pakistan.

He also urged the business community to fully utilize and benefit from sectoral policies designed by the government offering incentives like tax breaks, tax refunds, tax reduction, dedicated infrastructure and investor facilitation services.

Terming the CPEC a reflection of exemplary Pak-China bilateral relations, the president said that huge investments under CPEC would further reinvigorate various sectors of Pakistan’s economy, besides attracting investment from friendly countries in different sectors.

He further said that CPEC had already advanced the level of cooperation with Pakistan’s all-weather friend China in the infrastructure and energy sectors.

President Alvi said that CPEC had helped Pakistan develop a world-class road network, which would not only improve internal connectivity but would also help forge closer linkages with other countries in the region.

He said the steps were being taken to improve the transmission and distribution system of the country under CPEC, enhance system reliability, address the chronic problem of circular debt and ensure sustained provision of energy at affordable rates for industrial and commercial activities.

Expressing satisfaction with the multi-dimensional and multi-sectoral work being undertaken by China in Gwadar, the president said that it would help realize the dream of making Gwadar a centre of regional trade and investment.

He further said that Gwadar Port would be an ideal sea route for trade with Afghanistan and the Central Asian Republics (CARs). He also underlined the need for peace in Afghanistan which would ultimately open trade and economic opportunities for the region and neighbouring countries.

President Alvi underlined that the government had introduced a comprehensive program for skill development of the youth, especially in the IT sector, with a view to provide a skilled workforce to the local industry and manpower export market.

He expressed the hope that collaboration between the two countries in the IT sector would be further enhanced.

The president also appreciated the management of the daily Pakistan Observer for hosting the event, which would go a long way in complementing the efforts of the government to promote foreign investment in our motherland.

Ambassador of China Nong Rong, in his address, said that Pakistan and China enjoyed exemplary and all-weather friendship in all sectors and CPEC was one of the manifestations of that cooperation.

He said that China would continue its support to the CPEC projects to ensure that the development work on those projects was carried out with full potential.

He said that the cooperation between the two countries was further being enhanced in the social sector, industry, culture and technology.